With Christmas approaching so soon I received a frantic call from my aunt over the weekend who explained her nephew would be joining us for Christmas. Her worry was viewing her nephews veganism as a problem , to a Ghanaian woman, when you cannot eat the food she prepares is a big problem. We could over hear her children telling her to stop worrying and that he could feast on the roast potatoes and vegetables. However since my aunt believed I was a part time vegan and full time concoctionist she needed me to make something so he wouldn’t feel left out.
My first recipe to test was my take on a nut roast meets vegetable loaf, however rather throw everything into it, I decided to only use carrots and squashes with fresh breadcrumbs from a fresh stone-baked roll, cooked red quinoa and cooked barley. I wanted the sweetness of the carrots, pumpkin and butternut squash to be a complementary union with the other vegetable delights that will be served on the table. Secondly the color of the pumpkin and would prevent it from looking like a typical unexciting brown or beige loaf.
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking time:50 minutes Serves: 8-10 slices
300g butternut squash cubed
300g pumpkin or squash cubed
4 medium carrots cubed
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for the pan
1 red onion finely chopped
1 white onion finely chopped
100 g cooked barley
100 g cooked red quinoa
1 Small bread roll
1 tbsp ground walnuts crushed (optional)
Fresh Herbs & Seasoning
1 sprig of rosemary
4 sage leaves chopped
2 cloves of smoked garlic crushed
5 sprigs of thyme finely chopped
10 sprigs of chive finely chopped
1 tsp dried onion powder
1/2 tsp of smoked paprika
- Rinse the carrots, butternut squash and pumpkin, place in a pan with water. Season with salt, add the sprig of rosemary and cook on medium heat for 10 minutes
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. line 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with greaseproof paper.
- Meanwhile hand tear the bread roll placing the contents in a food processor and wiz until they resemble fine fluffy breadcrumbs. Empty the contents into a large bowl with the cooked barley and cooked quinoa.
- Turn off the heat from the pan containing the carrots, butternut squash and pumpkin, drain the water and set aside. Remove the sprig of rosemary.
- Heat the 2 tablespoons oil in and non-stick pan. Sauté the onions with a generous amount of salt and pepper. When the onion has started to turn translucent, add the garlic and cook for 1 minute before adding the herbs and stir well.
- Add the carrots, butternut squash and pumpkin to the onions and stir well. Cook for 5-6 minutes. Taste to ensure there is enough seasoning. It should be slightly salty.
- Remove the sautéed vegetables from the heat and add to the bowl containing the breadcrumb mixture and mix well.
- Press into the prepared loaf tin, cover with foil, and bake for 35 minutes. Take the foil off and bake for another 15 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a cool rack for 15 minutes
- Take it out of the tin and sprinkle with the ground walnuts.
- Cut into slices, serve and enjoy (it goes especially well with sautéed green beans topped Gravy).